Names start to vanish from Worcester war memorial

Malvern Gazette: The Battle of Gheluvelt War Memorial The Battle of Gheluvelt War Memorial

THE names of hero soldiers killed in one of the bloodiest battles of the First World War have started to vanish from a Worcester memorial.

Much to the dismay of council chiefs, this roll of honour unveiled at Gheluvelt Park just over two years ago is becoming impossible to read.

The creation, which cost £33,000, features the names of dead soldiers from the 2nd Battalion of the Worcestershire Regiment.

They fought at Ypres in Belgium to hold back the Germans, etching their efforts into the country’s debt forever.

The interpretation board, which was finished in August 2010, was designed to rust in natural weather conditions but retain the names forever.

But the city council has admitted they will now have to be re-etched because they are becoming unrecognisable.

A city council spokesman said: “The names on the monument could be clearly read when it was installed two years ago.

“The wording sections have degraded far more quickly than was anticipated and we believe the letters, which were originally etched using acid, were not etched deeply enough - It is very regrettable.

“We are looking at the possibility of cutting the letters again, using a different metal.”

But its appearance has been criticised by some community leaders. Councillor Joy Squires said: “I was in the park a week ago and I did notice the names could not be read. “

The concept of it was great but I’m surprised this has happened so quickly - I hadn’t realised they would be unreadable in such a short space of time.”

Shaun McCarthy, secretary of the Worcestershire Royal British Legion, said: “I had heard about this problem on the grapevine.

“From an RBL perspective, I’m glad something is being done and there will be a resolution to it.”

Alan Barnatt, chairman of the Friends of Gheluvelt Park group, said: “Nobody is happy about it because it doesn’t work as it was supposed to.

“But the council is looking at alternative ways to bring the names back, very senior guys are trying to solve the problem.

“It will be solved, this is just bad luck.”

Comments (4)

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2:18pm Fri 21 Sep 12

moatler says...

I'd say it is a little bit more than bad luck! There doesn't seem to be any mention of the hapless person/firm who was paid to design the memorial being taken to task or putting it right. Although perhaps it wasn't professionally designed and hence the lackadaisical attitude of all concerned.
It is a fantastic memorial and I hope that it is restored to its former glory soon.
I'd say it is a little bit more than bad luck! There doesn't seem to be any mention of the hapless person/firm who was paid to design the memorial being taken to task or putting it right. Although perhaps it wasn't professionally designed and hence the lackadaisical attitude of all concerned. It is a fantastic memorial and I hope that it is restored to its former glory soon. moatler

2:43pm Fri 21 Sep 12

MrStJohns says...

Wow another mind blowingly pointless comment form labours newest mouth piece joy squires,




The memorial and what it stands for I think is fantastic, the way the metal has changed colour now looks wonderful.


Not that I am an expert in such matters(well i am really ;-)), but when doing rat look cars, a method of encouraging rust/ oxidation on the body work is done, the memorial has already reached this stage.


The body work is then sealed using wax or similar to prevent further weathering. Im sure that method could be used int his case, re do the names then seal the metal surface to prevent further weathering
Wow another mind blowingly pointless comment form labours newest mouth piece joy squires, The memorial and what it stands for I think is fantastic, the way the metal has changed colour now looks wonderful. Not that I am an expert in such matters(well i am really ;-)), but when doing rat look cars, a method of encouraging rust/ oxidation on the body work is done, the memorial has already reached this stage. The body work is then sealed using wax or similar to prevent further weathering. Im sure that method could be used int his case, re do the names then seal the metal surface to prevent further weathering MrStJohns

2:53pm Fri 21 Sep 12

MakeUthink says...

Moatler, I agree with you. Get the company that 'promised' the engraved names would be enhanced with age, to redo the lot. Simples.
Moatler, I agree with you. Get the company that 'promised' the engraved names would be enhanced with age, to redo the lot. Simples. MakeUthink

6:37pm Sat 22 Sep 12

Rob Peachey says...

It's obvious that the designed rusting is doing its work - too well. Mr StJohns comment leads me to think that any classic car restorer would be able to advise on a suitable treatment for the lettering. It is good to note that Cllr Joy Squires has seen this as she may be able to get Council help on this little bit of restoration.

Rob
It's obvious that the designed rusting is doing its work - too well. Mr StJohns comment leads me to think that any classic car restorer would be able to advise on a suitable treatment for the lettering. It is good to note that Cllr Joy Squires has seen this as she may be able to get Council help on this little bit of restoration. Rob Rob Peachey

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